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“You Mark My Words, Guyana Is Going To Go Nowhere,” King

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“It’s worth bearing in mind that very few countries in the world have grown from poverty to wealth, having done so on the basis of natural resources. Very, very few, oil-rich countries like Venezuela is a basket case and Nigeria is a joke.

One of the reasons why there is this thing called a ‘resource curse’, why countries which have resources tend to do worse, is because not having resources forces a country to have good governance, because that’s the only way the Government and the elite can extract wealth. For them to extract wealth to run the Government, they have to create a wealth-creating environment. Resource-poor Singapore and Switzerland are examples of countries which have become wealthy through good governance.

The only way that the Government will have resources to function is to have an environment that creates the resources. When you have natural resources you don’t have to do that. With natural resources the Government then only becomes an institution to fight over the resources and extract it. And unless you have strong institutions to begin with, to put a constraint on the fight for spoils, it descends into corruption and violence because the spoils are so lucrative; it’s worth killing people to get into power. That’s what’s going to happen to Guyana because Guyana already has weak institutions.

“It’s not even a radical view amongst political economists,”

Because of my fears of the resource curse, I pray that oil is not discovered in Jamaica. I would rue the day that Jamaica discovers oil for exactly that reason and Jamaica has stronger institutions than Guyana.”

Dr Damien King in an interview with the Jamaica Observer, citing that the oil revenues could cause corruption to increase in the country and make it worse off than it was before accessing the wealth.

‘Mark my words’

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Leadership Conversations

Influential Caribbean Leaders Shaping the Future

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The Caribbean region is known for its vibrant culture, diverse communities, and increasingly, its dynamic leadership on the global stage. As we navigate through the complexities of the 21st century, several leaders stand out for their contributions to their nations and the broader Caribbean community. These visionaries are not only addressing the immediate challenges their countries face but are also laying down the groundwork for a prosperous and resilient future.

Trailblazing Political Leaders

In the realm of politics, the Caribbean has seen a number of influential figures who have transcended local boundaries to make a mark internationally. These leaders are characterized by their innovative approaches to governance, commitment to sustainability, and advocacy for social justice. Their leadership transcends politics, impacting economic policies, social reforms, and environmental conservation efforts.

 

 

 

 

 

One such leader is Mia Mottley, the Prime Minister of Barbados. Under her leadership, Barbados has made significant strides in addressing climate change, advocating for small island developing states on the global stage, and pushing for economic innovation. Mottley’s bold decision to transition Barbados into a republic, moving away from colonial legacies, signifies a new era of self-determination and national pride for the Caribbean island.

 

 

 

 

 

In Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves has been a steadfast advocate for regional integration and economic diversification. His tenure has seen a focus on education reforms, infrastructure development, and bolstering the agricultural sector to ensure food security and sustainability. Gonsalves’ commitment to Caribbean unity and resilience serves as a model for collaborative regional efforts.

 

 

 

 

 

Another notable leader is President Irfaan Ali of Guyana. Taking the helm of one of the fastest-growing economies in the world, Ali is navigating Guyana’s recent oil discoveries with an eye on sustainable development and equitable distribution of wealth. His presidency marks a pivotal moment for Guyana and the Caribbean, as the nation explores ways to leverage its resources while promoting environmental stewardship and inclusivity.

Social Visionaries and Economic Strategists

Beyond traditional politics, the Caribbean is home to leaders who are pioneering change in social and economic spheres. These individuals are leveraging technology, cultural capital, and international partnerships to transform their societies and, by extension, the region.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit of Dominica is leading his island’s efforts to become the world’s first climate-resilient nation following the devastation of Hurricane Maria in 2017. Skerrit’s vision of a “Nature Island” encompasses aggressive reforestation initiatives, investment in renewable energy, and construction of climate-resilient infrastructure, setting an example for sustainable development worldwide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. the Honourable Keith Rowley, Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, is focused on economic diversification to ensure long-term prosperity. Recognizing the challenges of an energy-dependent economy, Rowley is promoting investment in manufacturing, tourism, and technology sectors. His approach to governance emphasizes stability, innovation, and preparing the nation’s workforce for the future.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Honourable Andrew Holness, Prime Minister of Jamaica, is championing education reform and digital transformation as pillars for national development. By investing in digital infrastructure and education, Holness aims to position Jamaica as a leader in technology and innovation in the Caribbean. His commitment to harnessing the power of technology for social and economic advancement is shaping a new vision for Jamaica’s future.

Mia Mottley’s leadership has positioned Barbados as a strong advocate for climate action.
Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves champions Caribbean unity and resilience.
President Irfaan Ali is steering Guyana towards sustainable wealth distribution.
Roosevelt Skerrit’s commitment to making Dominica a climate-resilient nation is globally recognized.

These leaders, among others, exemplify the diverse and forward-thinking leadership emerging from the Caribbean. Amidst challenges such as climate change, economic vulnerability, and social inequality, they are crafting innovative solutions that not only address immediate concerns but also lay the foundation for a sustainable and prosperous future. By doing so, they are not only impacting their nations but also contributing to the Caribbean’s collective identity on the global stage.

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To Be Wise, You Must Be A Reader….Charlie Munger

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How did Munger become the sage that he was? Being a voracious reader played a significant role. Munger viewed reading as necessary for developing wisdom: “In my whole life, I have known no wise people who didn’t read all the time—none, zero. You’d be amazed at how much Warren reads—and how much I read. My children laugh at me. They think I’m a book with a couple of legs sticking out.”

Munger thought reading beyond just one discipline was necessary to become a world-wise person. He noted, “You must know the big ideas in the big disciplines and use them routinely — all of them, not just a few. Most people are trained in one model — economics, for example — and try to solve all problems in one way. You know the old saying: to the man with a hammer, the world looks like a nail. This is a dumb way of handling problems.” Source for

In Munger’s view, to be a great investor, you’d be better off reading 100 biographies than 100 books about how to invest. The key is to immerse yourself in ideas across disciplines to create your latticework of mental models. He admonished people to “Develop into a lifelong self-learner through voracious reading; cultivate curiosity and strive to become a little wiser every day.”

Charlie Munger, the vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and Warren Buffett’s business partner, died November 28 — less than a month short of his 100th birthday.

Source: John Jennings Forbes Contributor
I write about investments and issues that affect wealthy families.

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Beware Of Making Decisions Based On Predictions of the Future…..Charlie Munger

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Given Berkshire Hathaway’s great success, you’d think that Munger and Buffett had an uncanny ability to predict the future. The opposite is true: A pillar of their success is their ability to admit they cannot predict the future.

Munger has noted that he’s “never been able to predict accurately. I don’t make money predicting accurately. We just tend to get into good businesses and stay there.” Moreover, Munger didn’t place much stock in experts’ predictions either: “People have always had this craving to have someone tell them the future. Long ago, kings would hire people to read sheep guts. There’s always been a market for people who pretend to know the future. Listening to today’s forecasters is just as crazy as when the king hired the guy to look at the sheep guts. It happens over and over and over.” Source for quotes.

I think about Munger’s perspective whenever I’m tempted to click on some investment guru’s prediction about what the stock market will return or the path of interest rates. If Munger and Buffett, two of the greatest investors of all time, don’t think they can predict the future or listen to expert predictions, why should we behave any differently?

Charlie Munger, the vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and Warren Buffett’s business partner, died November 28 — less than a month short of his 100th birthday.

Source: John Jennings Forbes Contributor
I write about investments and issues that affect wealthy families.

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Leadership Conversations

Know The Other Side’s Arguments……Charlie Munger

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Munger cautioned against having an opinion unless you are fully educated on all sides of the issue, which is a specific application of the concept of inversion.

In 2007, Munger gave the commencement speech at the USC School of Law, and in his talk, he warned of “extremely intense ideology because it cabbages up one’s mind.” He told the attendees that whenever he “drifts toward preferring one ideology over another” he forces himself to consider the other side by telling himself, “I’m not entitled to have an opinion on this subject unless I can state the arguments against my position better than the people do who are supporting it. I think only when I reach that stage am I qualified to speak.”

The underlying concept is that it takes work to have an informed opinion, and ideological thinking is lazy thinking. Instead of looking for facts that support your ideological leanings, having a valid opinion involves the often painful task of researching facts that support the other side.

Charlie Munger, the vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and Warren Buffett’s business partner, died November 28 — less than a month short of his 100th birthday.

Source: John Jennings Forbes Contributor
I write about investments and issues that affect wealthy families.

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Leadership Conversations

The Power Of Inversion……Charlie Munger

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“Invert, always invert.” – Carl Jacobi, 19th century mathematician

A compelling mental model Munger espoused is inversion, based on Jacobi’s belief that a powerful way to solve math problems is to restate them in inverse form. Munger’s insight is that inversion is robust beyond mathematics; thinking is clarified by considering issues both forward and backward ways.

Most of us think of our goals in a forward direction, as in, “What do I need to do to accomplish my goal?” But it can be powerful to look at it backward by thinking about what we should do to ensure we won’t meet our objective. For example, if you want to lose weight, instead of just thinking about what you need to do to lose weight, it’s also instructive to ask yourself, “What would I do if I didn’t want to lose weight?” Those things might include not exercising, overeating, avoiding fruits and vegetables, and consuming many highly processed foods loaded with sugar. That inverted list can help you decide how to behave to achieve your goals.

Also, as I wrote in “Five Ways to Be a Terrible Investor,” inversion is a mental model that is valuable in shaping good investment behavior.

Charlie Munger, the vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway and Warren Buffett’s business partner, died November 28 — less than a month short of his 100th birthday.

Source: John Jennings Forbes Contributor
I write about investments and issues that affect wealthy families.

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